The Economist got it wrong on the reasons for John Howard’s success as Prime Minister

I’ve just read a very poorly reasoned article about John Howard’s 10 years as PM in this weeks The Economist.

I felt compelled to write a letter to the editor about it here:

Sir – You claim that John Howard has retained Prime Ministerial office for 10 years primarily through luck playing “a big part” along with circumstances external to his leadership such as the economic legacy of the former Australian Labor Party (ALP) Government and China’s demand for Australia’s mineral wealth, which have “enabled Howard to shower money on voters at election times”.

To quote Obi-Wan Kenobi, “In my experience, there’s no such thing as luck”.

In ignoring key initiatives such as major reform of the tax system with the introduction of a progressive goods and services tax, industrial relations reform, waterfront reform, privatisation of Government owned businesses and introduction of free trade initiatives, you ignored the reforms which have produced Australia’s productivity growth and economic strength over the past ten years; the foundation for Howard’s success. However if I am wrong and luck is the most important factor in long term political success then I would kindly ask that you expand your marvellous newspaper to include a section on astrology, numerology and Jedi mind tricks.

Kindest Regards…